TORONTO, Nov. 15, 2012 /CNW/ - A college education in engineering and applied science technology is opening plenty of doors, even as the general Canadian economy struggles with slow growth.
When the new 2012 OACETT Salary Survey asked employers if they planned to increase the number of engineering technicians or technologists in their organizations within the next 12 months, 47% said Yes, up from 41% in OACETT's previous survey in 2010. Organization size was not a factor in the decision - small firms were just as likely as larger ones to plan on adding engineering technology staff over the next year.
Yet acquiring the right talent remains a challenge. Compared to 2010, when 54% of employers said they were finding it difficult to attract qualified candidates, this year 65% said they were having the same trouble. That level almost matches the 68% figure of the pre-recession economy of 2007.
The survey also canvassed employers for their views on professional development (PD). Almost a third (31%) encourages their employees who are members of professional associations to volunteer their time as part of their PD commitment, up substantially from 20% in 2010. Of the types of PD coursework pursued by engineering technology professionals, industry-related activities were cited most frequently (78%), followed by discipline-related (66%). However, a growing number of employers (41%, up from 36% in the previous survey) encourage non-technical PD activities such as effective communication, negotiation skills and sales training. This important finding offers fresh evidence that communication skills are vital to successful performance in engineering technology.
In a companion survey with the Association's individual members, as another reflection of the changing nature of the engineering technology workforce, more than half of respondents said flextime was available at their place of employment, and more than a third are allowed to work from home, at least part of the time. Female technology professionals were the most likely to value, and take advantage, of this new flexible working environment in the technology sector.
OACETT is a non-profit, self-governing, professional association of more than 24,000 members and a 55-year history of certification in Ontario. OACETT promotes the interests of engineering and applied science technicians and technologists in industry, educational institutions, the public and government.
The Association is Ontario's independent certifying body for engineering/applied science technicians and technologists. The certifying arm of OACETT is the Institute of Engineering Technology of Ontario (IETO). IETO's panel of expert members evaluates applications and registers engineering/applied science technicians and technologists who meet recognized national standards in education and experience.
OACETT confers the designations C.Tech. and C.E.T. Our members also hold the A.Sc.T. title. These symbols of achievement in engineering/applied science technology are legally protected for use by certified members. The designations are recognized across Canada and around the world.
SOURCE: OACETT - Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians & Technologists
For further information:
Acting Manager, Marketing and Communications
Ontario Association of Engineering Technicians and Technologists
404-10 Four Seasons Place
Toronto, ON M9B 6H7
Tel: 416-621-9621, ext. 225